Brightmark Energy, a San Francisco-based renewable energy development company, has acquired a majority interest and invested $10 million in Chagrin Falls, Ohio-based RES Polyflow and says it has committed to an additional $47 million investment in RES Polyflow’s commercial-scale plastic-scrap-to-fuel facility in Ashley, Indiana.
The fuel can be used for transportation purposes and for other markets, according to both companies. The facility is being planned to convert 100,000 tons of plastic scrap into roughly 18 million gallons of diesel fuel and naphtha blend stocks, plus 5 million gallons of wax per year.
“This is a tremendous opportunity to combat a major environmental ill and create positive economic incentives in the process,” says Bob Powell, president and CEO of Brightmark Energy. “We look forward to developing additional plastics conversion facilities both across the United States and globally over the next several years.”
Zeina El-Azzi, Brightmark chief development officer, remarks, “This sustainable technology directly addresses an acute problem facing the U.S.: more than 91 percent of the 34.5 million tons of plastic domestically produced each year is not recycled. These products end up sitting in landfills for thousands of years or littering communities and waterways. We’re excited to help bring an economically viable solution to the marketplace.”
“The RES Polyflow plastics-to-fuel process allows post-use plastics to be utilized in an environmentally friendly way, offering a productive end-of-life solution for this material,” says Jay Schabel, a former CEO of RES Polyflow and now president of Brightmark’s new subsidiary, BME Renewable Polyfuels. “Simply attaching a positive and predictable market value to this segment of the waste stream incentivizes the use of materials that would otherwise end up in a landfill or as litter.”